SEARCH ENGINES

Getting your website indexed with search engines
iCommerce is 100% search engine friendly and provides you with the tools to maximise your natural search listings.

We recommend that you submit your website address (URL) to the following search engines:
  • http://www.google.com/addurl/
  • http://uk.search.yahoo.com/free/request
  • http://search.msn.com/docs/submit.aspx
  • http://www.altavista.com/addurl/default
  • http://www.alltheweb.com/help/webmaster/submit_site
  • http://www.dmoz.org/
Search engine optimisation is still the most cost-effective way of maximising your presence online by improving your rankings in search engines natural listings and driving relevant, quality traffic to your website. According to the latest research, over 80% of users only click on natural search engine listings when conducting a search.

On page optimisation
On page optimisation refers to the techniques available to website owners for creating well ranked pages. These elements include.

Page title
The title tag is arguably the most important element in on-page SEO. It is important to get this right for the following reasons:

Algorithmic weighting
The title is the most important single summary of what a web page is all about and therefore carries the highest on-page weighting in the Google algorithm.

Results formatting
When Google serves up search engine results pages for a user query, it uses the page title as the link for each result. As such it is important that this carries a clear call to action for users to click on.

Browser usability
Web browsers display the title tag in the top bar of the browser window and, in more recent browser versions, for tabbed navigation between different web pages in the same window. The page title is also an important usability and navigation aid for browser users.

Our recommendations for creating effective page titles:
  • Each web page must have a unique title tag. Consistency should be maintained across all
  • pages in how the title tags have been constructed.
  • The length of each title tag should in general not exceed 85 characters (including spaces) and should not exceed 120 characters.
  • Title tags should ideally be written in such a way that they truncate at both 66 and 75 characters and not exceed 120 characters.
  • Title tags should where possible should incorporate a short call to action.
  • Keywords used in the title tag should be repeated in the URL, meta keyword tag, heading tags and page body text.
Heading tags
After the title tag the heading tag is considered to be the next most important element of on-page SEO.

H1 tags should be incorporated on all page titles.

Breadcrumb trails
Breadcrumb trails are of immense value for usability and SEO value. It is important to use breadcrumb trails within your website for the following reasons:
  • A breadcrumb trail reinforces the navigational structure of your website allowing PageRank to be distributed evenly down through your pages.
  • A breadcrumb trail is generally the first block of text that appears in the body of the page content.
  • This provides the perfect opportunity to reinforce your keywords.
  • A breadcrumb trail provides keyword-rich anchor text linking to other pages within your website.
Meta descriptions
The purpose of the meta description tag is to provide a brief synopsis of the content for any given page.

The meta description tag carries very little SEO value however it is important to get this right as many search engines use this when constructing the call to action snippet that displays below the results link within the search page results.

Meta keywords
The purpose of the key word tag is to provide information to the search engine about any given page as an aid to semantic indexing. Whist the meta keyword tag does not have as much weighting with Google as it did a few years ago it is still worth pursuing as other search engines such as Yahoo are still influenced by it.

Our recommendations for creating meta keywords:
  • Each phrase should be separated by a comma and no space (e.g. gearbox,gearbox repairs,)
  • Use lower case for all keywords and pluralise words and phrases where possible.
  • Include all site wide phrases at the front of the meta key word tag of the home page.
  • All deep level phrases should be excluded.
  • Never use more than 50 words in the meta key word tag and ideally limit it to 35.
  • All phrases should appear at least once within the on-page content.

An example of how to apply this to your web pages:

Page URL
www.yourdomain.co.uk/service/gearboxes.aspx

Page title
Gearboxes – Gearbox Repairs – Gearbox Replacement – Gearbox Servicing

Meta Description
Gearbox trouble? Contact your nearest autocentre to find out more about our gearbox repair and gearbox replacement services

Meta Tags
gearboxes,gearbox repair,gearbox replacement,gearbox servicing,gear box,gear box replacement,car gearboxs,replace gearbox,gearbox repairs,gearbox replacements

Breadcrumb
Home > Services > Gearboxes

Body text and keyword density
The density of keywords within the body text of the page plays an important part of on-page SEO. Care should be taken to ensure that the overall density of key words and key phrases equates to around 20% of the overall body text.

  The C-shape
Within the body of any given web page there are essentially five elements that take prominence from an SEO perspective, the breadcrumb trail, heading tags, body text, alt tags and internal navigation.

The most important text blocks on the page generally appear at the top of the page, nearest the left of the page and in the footer. This is referred to as the C-shape and is important due to the way users are accustomed to viewing and finding content on a website. The general consensus is that search engine algorithms attempt to simulate this behaviour and grant prominence to content in these key areas.

Directory structures
After your domain name, the next most prominent opportunity for key-word deployment is the directory name structure of your website.

Our recommendations for optimising the directory structure of your website:
  • The depth of the website should be limited to no more than four levels where possible.
  • Ideally any given page should be no more than three clicks away from your home page.
  • Sub-category pages under any given category should be limited to eight. If your site structure goes beyond this, considerations should be made to include additional top level categories.
Asset optimisation
All image and document assets should be optimised to include a title and your key words. If possible the file names of any documents and images should also be amended to include your keywords.

Google maps
Google maps is a free listings service that can be accessed at www.maps.google.com. This service provides a free yet very effective way for users searching for a service within a geo graphic location to find your business.

W3C Compliance and validation
Most pages on the World Wide Web are written in computer languages (such as HTML) that allow Web authors to structure text, add multimedia content, and specify what appearance, or style, the result should have.

Validation is a process of checking your documents against a formal Standard, such as those published by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) for HTML and XML-derived Web document types, or by the WapForum for WML. It serves a similar purpose to spell checking and proof reading for grammar and
syntax, but is much more precise and reliable than any of those processes because it is dealing with precisely-specified machine languages, not with nebulously-defined human natural language.

Off page optimisation

XML Sitemaps
An XML sitemap contains an ordered list of all the pages within the website and provide search engines with a means to orientate themselves and manage their crawl activity.

Creating an XML sitemap is a relatively straight-forward process however the following considerations should be applied:
  • The <Priority> tag should be used to provide the search engine with an idea of the importance of a URL.
  • A value of 0.9 should be used for the homepage, 0.8 for section pages, 0.7 for category pages and 0.6 for important content pages.
  • The sitemap should be referenced in the robots.txt file.
How Google displays results
The design of Google’s search results pages is based on years of trial, error and extensive research.

Research undertaken by OneUp.com illustrates the importance of being listed on the first two pages of Google for your search terms.
  • Position 1-11 – 48% of user clicks
  • Position 11-20 – 36% of user clicks
  • Position 21-30 – 12% of user clicks
  • Position 31+ - 4% of user clicks
Link building
Link building is an important part of off page SEO when used effectively. Care must be taken to ensure that search engines do not see link building activities as what is more commonly known as link farming.

Social bookmarking
Social bookmarking is fast becoming the best way to gain quality-incoming links. This type of link rates well with search engines as it is considered to be of higher value than those generated by reciprocal linking activities.

Reciprocal link exchanges
Reciprocal link exchanges are now considered to carry a much lesser weighting than they did previously.

Whist this may be the case, reciprocal link exchanges can be effective when used correctly and care must be taken to ensure that exchanges are only made with sites containing related content and ideally with a PageRank of 4 or higher.

About Google PageRank
PageRank relies on the uniquely democratic nature of the web by using its vast link structure as an indicator of an individual page’s value. In essence, Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. But, Google looks at considerably more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page receives; for example, it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves “important” weigh more heavily and help to make other pages “important.”

Using these and other factors, Google provides its views on pages relative importance.

Of course, important pages mean nothing to you if they don’t match your query. So, Google combines

PageRank with sophisticated text-matching techniques to find pages that are both important and relevant to your search. Google goes far beyond the number of times a term appears on a page and examines dozens of aspects of the pages content (and the content of the pages linking to it) to determine if it’s a good match for your query.
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